Abstract Both healthcare professionals and the healthcare system must defend each patient's health individually while simultaneously seeking to protect the population's health in general. Nowadays, there is an important increase in the cost
of healthcare supply, mainly due to the developments of medical science, the public's expectations and the demographic ageing. Since healthcare resources are not unlimited, it is obvious that immoderate consumption of them by certain patients limits the use of the same funds by others. Therefore,
we have to seek an optimal distribution of the existing resources in order to manage a constriction of expenses, especially under the circumstances of the modern economic crisis. The criteria of effectiveness and efficiency should be used. Health policies focus on both the public's behaviour
and the rules of medical practice. Under the modern challenges the physician's role is particularly important for the protection of the patient's health and the promotion of public health.